Red Tart Cherries
The red tart cherries are excellent for canning, freezing and baking. They are grade A, pitted and harvested at the peak of ripeness. They are packaged in "slush" packs (never frozen) and cooled to 30 degrees within 24 hours from the tree. They are delivered to us within 48 hours of being picked. If kept refrigerated at all times (30 to 40 degrees) the unsugared cherries will be good for 4 days. They should be taken home immediately.
The pitted red tart cherries are packed without sugar because that is the most popular request. No doubt diabetics and others avoiding or watching sugar in their diets account for this. Further, cherries packed without sugar are more easily used in baking, etc. so you do not need to try calculating changes in recipes. The negative aspect is that the cherries without sugar that are in contact with air on the top of the pack will oxidize (turn brown in color) within hours of being pitted. This brown color is NOT an indication of bad cherries.
Cherries should be frozen or used as SOON as possible. To use, scoop out the cherries, including the amount of juice that naturally comes with the utensil you use. Do not DRAIN the cherries, yet you will not want to use ALL the juice that comes with them either. For freezing, you may add sugar or freeze without it. When thawing, it is suggested that you spread the cherries out so they can lose their "frost". Then, use while still slightly frozen for maximum plumpness.
One quart of tart cherries weighs about 2 pounds. It also equals 4 cups when pitted. It takes approximately 1-1/2 pounds of fresh pitted cherries to fill a 9" pie and there are 58 calories in 3-1/2 ounces of cherries.
We hope you enjoy your fresh cherries!